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Posts Tagged ‘video’

This is the first post in a series I intend to publish on NovaNews.  For ease of access over time, these posts will be listed on a separate page – see page tabs above.

The idea to incorporate Stop-Look-Learn on NovaNews is born from the notion that visuals – especially when used to inspire and educate senior students – is a very powerful tool.

The many videos/thought ideas that are to be included on this page are powerful and beautiful.  They provide stimulation to think outside the box.  They provide inspiration to see our world differently.  They provide opportunity to think about topics that may otherwise pass us by.

While I discovered some a few years ago, others are more recent discoveries.  The common theme of them all is that they contribute to my personal mantra of constantly

Experimenting, discovering, lifelong learning …..

Check out this, the first in this new series.   May it inspire you as much as it has inspired me!

 

Ideas push the world forward

Even though this is an ad published in 2016 for the new MacBook Pro, the video encapsulates some of the most revolutionary ideas that have been developed by man.

How many revolutionary ideas can you spot?!

 

 

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The internet is an endless reservoir of resources.  Wading through what is current, valuable and relevant though can be an exhaustive and laborious process for many, most especially our students.

KidsNews, a resource designed to be informative and appealing to students, presents current and reliable news sourced from a wide range of News Corp publications. The content is written in child appropriate language and is filtered to remove inappropriate content or imagery.  Pitched to students from Year 3 to Year 8, a colour coding system is used to identify age appropriate content and comprehension levels:

  • Green – Simple to medium vocabulary, story content easily understood, accessible to all readers (especially with audio option)
  • Orange – medium level of vocabulary, story content a little more complex but still able to be read and understood at middle to senior primary level (audio option and glossary to assist)
  • Red – contains complex vocabulary and content that is of a higher level, suited to more able readers, requires teacher scaffolding for less capable readers.

Three new articles, divided into two main categories, are added each school day:

  • News — covering current affairs, key curriculum topics, interesting stories about people, animals and things
  • Sport — Australian and international sports events and people.

Aiming to be a quality resource for teachers, KidsNews has been developed as a literary resource for teachers using current daily news stories suitable for students.  The classification of content can be sourced by selecting the ‘Key Topics’ tab from the top menu:

The recent gathering of leaders from over 40 countries worldwide to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the World War II concentration camp Auschwitz is just one of the recent subjects highlighted on this website.  By integrating photographs taken by The Duchess of Cambridge into the KidsNews article Photos a moving tribute to Holocaust survivors this webpage incorporates an explanation of the Duchess of Cambridge’s photographs, a brief explanation of The Holocaust, a glossary of key vocabulary, two extra reading articles, a quick quiz, an audio in which the article is read, a number of classroom activities and finally an opportunity for readers to leave a comment. A clear statement at the start of the article indicates to teachers that the article relates to the Key Topic of Humanities and that both the text and content are pitched at a red – more able –  reading level.

In addition to the content are a range of classroom activities – three per news article – written by teachers for teachers that are linked directly to the Australian curriculum.  As noted on the KidsNews website:

The activities vary each day and are specific to the article. Each activity also includes an extension for higher students. The types of activities include:

  • Written projects for literacy, comprehension and storytelling
  • Art projects
  • Geography
  • Speech writing
  • Persuasive text
  • Maths etc.

Explore many more features available on this fabulous website by selecting the How to Use tab at the bottom of the webpage or spend a few minutes watching the video incorporated on this page:

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It’s just over 12 months since France passed new laws banning smartphones, tablets and smartwatches in schools.  The law came into effect just one month later and aimed to extend an earlier ban of smartphones in classrooms, in place since 2010, to a ban of smartphone use across the entire school premises.

Studies citing the success or otherwise of the ban are hard to come by.  An article in Forbes magazine a year later, The Mobile Phone Ban In French Schools, One Year On. Would It Work Elsewhere? (August 30, 2019) indirectly comments on its benefits by quoting research from the London School of Economics:

  • due to increased concentration, limited phone use in schools directly correlates with exam success
  • restricting phone use is a low-cost policy to reduce educational inequalities
  • reduced screen time reduces the negative impact of social media: bullying
  • phone theft has been reduced

The Forbes article notes that the most difficult aspect of the French ban is enforcing it. Despite the consequences, including confiscation or detentions, students being students, have found ways to get around the ban, mostly it seems by using their mobile phones in either the toilets or in the playground where there is less supervision.

So how does this report bode for schools and students in Victoria?

Announcing the new Government Policy on June 26, 2019, Victorian Minister for Education James Merlino stated quite clearly the bounds of the new policy and its intended aims:

Mobile phones will be banned for all students at Victorian state primary and secondary schools from Term 1 2020, to help reduce distraction, tackle cyber bullying and improve learning outcomes for students.

Mobile Phones To Be Banned Next Year In All State Schools, 26 June, 2019

It sounds good.  Will it work though?  Will students comply or will they rebel against school rules imposed on them by the Government?

Could this ban becomes counterproductive?

Instead of banning mobile phones, should we instead be acknowledging the negative issues raised and do what we know to do best:

Teach students how to use mobile phones responsibly!

The arguments for and against the ban of mobile phones in schools raise many issues:

  • Can we ignore the fact that mobile phones have become the dominant mode of communication?
  • Does a ban of mobile phones in schools inadvertently highlight their negative use: aka cyberbullying?
  • Should we not be tackling the sticky central issue surrounding mobile phones – distractability?
  • Is the onus not on educators to create programs that develop and improve sustained concentration?
  • If mobile phones are a dominant part of our daily lives, doesn’t it make sense to incorporate them into our day-to-day school life?
  • Can educators, by creating positive opportunities for the use of mobile phones in the classroom, effectively teach students appropriate use?

So hot is this issue becoming, that a recent post on Education Review (October 4, 2019) took the question to the streets.  While watching this short video, I couldn’t help but notice the preponderance of mobile phones in the hands of people on the street behind the interviewer!

 

 

As we edge toward D Day – or should we be saying B (Ban) Day?! – educators still have a month or so to toy with some of the positive possibilities of using mobile phones in the classroom.  Take a few minutes to read through Will Longfield’s article: I’m a teacher, and I have no problem with phones in my classroom. Here’s why. (EducationHQ News, November 18, 2019) to glean lots of pertinent insights of the value of mobile phones in the classroom and ways they can be used in a classroom setting.  Some salient points raised:

  • learn what mobile phones can do – recognize an apps User Interface
  • cameras in mobile phones can take photos of teacher’s notes
  • monitor what’s going on – mobile phones should be screen up on desk
  • voice recording between two students = authentic student reflection
  • listening to music may not be all that bad
  • it all boils down to developing mutual teacher-student respect

Yet ….. arguments such as these are countered by the positive results reported in one school in New South Wales which has been trialling lock-up pouches for students’ mobile phones.  Reporting on ABC News: When schoolkids lock their mobile phones away in pouches for the day, amazing things happen (22nd June, 2019) students themselves are saying that they valuing the opportunity to be disengaged from technology.

While only time will tell the outcome of this debate, it is heartening to read positive comments, such as those in a recent KidsNews article which reports findings in schools in which a ban has already been trialed. The article: Kids in schools that have banned devices are seeing the benefits, whether they like it or not (August 12, 2019) reports that:

  • kids are now playing and having conversations with their friends at lunchtime
  • kids are finding it easier to be organised at school without their mobile phones
  • students are doing things together; not sitting on their phones
  • students no longer have to check their phone every two minutes
  • not being able to check emails and timetables during lunch forces students to get more organised
  • fully immersive conversations at lunchtime have replaced conversations that go off track when people look at their phones
  • social interaction among students has improved
  • the absence of phones had helped students to avoid distractions during the day
  • Michael Carr-Gregg (child psychologist) adds that banning phones is a sensible *mental health strategy* that lets children focus on learning

It will be interesting to re-visit this issue sometime in early 2021 to check the impact the ban has had on students in schools throughout Victoria.

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I’ve been desperately trying to get back into shape, so have decided to take the lead from this guy!

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Even though this is an ad published late last year for the new MacBook Pro, the video encapsulates some of the most revolutionary ideas that have been developed by man.

Quite literally

Ideas push the world forward!”

 

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Stephen King’s writing is legendary.

His books, of which there are more than 50, have sold more than 350 million copies worldwide.  Many of them have been adapted into movies, TV shows and comic books.  In addition to his novels, he has written more than 200 short stories.

While reading the genre of horror, supernatural fiction, suspense, science fiction and fantasy may rule him out as being your favourite kind of author, it is not many writers who have had such an impact on the world of literature or written as prolifically.

So having the opportunity to listen to Stephen King’s thoughts in a short radio interview late last year, I was surprised to find that his words resonated strongly with me.  Most particularly when he said

We forget what it is to be a child.”

my ears pricked up.  Why is it, King questions, that adults forget how to look at the world through the eyes of a child.

His thoughts remind me of the words of that well known educator, Sir Ken Robinson, who in videos such as Do schools kill creativity? also laments the fact that children lose their creativity as they work their way from pre-school through to the end of high school.

Have a listen to this short interview and in the process be spellbound by the incredible drawings that accompany the interview.

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More than a couple of years ago I came across a commencement speech given by David Foster Wallace in 2005 at Kenyon College.

An extract of his speech “This is water” has been coupled with graphics and is overlaid with David Foster Wallace reading his speech.  Intended as advice to graduating students stepping out into the world, Foster Wallace’s asks us to consider an alternate meaning to the banality and mundanity of everyday life.

Each of us he contends has to choose how to live our life.  Working on auto pilot, we can become bogged down by the boredom of routine and its inherent petty frustration.  If I am the centre of the world, my expectation is that my needs and feelings should determine the world’s priorities, he says.  If, however, we can learn how to think and pay attention to details and to perceive our world through the eyes of others, we will learn to enjoy the options life has to offer.  Looking beyond ourselves and the tiny details of daily life will, he suggests, make us more compassionate and reap rewards that will enable us to live a more fulfilling life.

The gift of being educated is understanding how to think.  Deciding what has meaning and what doesn’t is, he says, real freedom.

Take a few minutes to consider his words:

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A couple of months ago I blogged about HoloLens.  There was a fabulous video demonstrating the power of HoloLens and how it may well change the way we work, live and learn.

With disappointment, I just discovered that due to a copyright infringement, the YouTube channel associated with the video has been taken down.

Fascinated by the incredible impact that Microsoft HoloLens is most likely to have on us all, I found these two videos which give a glimpse of the capabilities of this emerging technology.

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Just lately I’ve been bombarded with a number of different articles and videos about the same topic:

The Internet of Things

Many may think this is a somewhat new idea, but in a recent Big Think video, Chris Curran estimates that it’s a term that’s been around for at least ten to fifteen years.  While early ideas explored how electrical appliances such as refrigerators and washing machines connected to the Internet, the focus soon shifted to how machine to machine communication could be achieved without any human intervention.  Subsequent exploration turned to developing consumer products such as the connected car and smart homes.

Current thinking, Curran concludes, is focused on what the Internet of Things is for service companies in business.  Not only is there a need to develop and refine new systems to collect data, but new kinds of processes need to be developed to manage the stream of data which will be collected by sensors in various service companies.  Curran intimates that a new kind of data architecture will evolve to capture, store, process, aggregate, and analyze data collected by installed sensor streams.

As I listened to his words, I couldn’t help thinking about the kind of data collected daily by the security gates at the entrance and exit of our school library.  How many of us, I found myself wondering, collect and analyze this data and consider its impact on our day to day operations?  What improvements, modifications or adjustments could we implement if we were to consider this data?   And what about those libraries who have installed RFID technology?  Is data being collected by this new amazing library technology feeding into our planning, programming and operational processes? Is there a need, as Curran suggests, for a new architecture to interpret this data?

An article in Education Technology Solutions, How the Internet of Things will transform education, highlights how education as we know it will be transformed and enhanced.

With estimated wide-scale adoption only five years away, and the pervasive spread of mobile devices from smartphones to tablets, and increasingly portable computers within student populations, IoT technologies will be able to connect the right people together to accelerate learning as well as collecting and interpreting data on learners’ behaviours and activity.

Along with enhanced initiatives of tailoring education to individual learning styles, making education more engaging and capturing data which can be used to inform the future, this short article also hints at the dangers and risks that can occur from mismanagement of data collected if issues of data security and integrity, along with the development of new education policies are not concurrently addressed.  Seemingly the implication is that new processes and perhaps new educational roles need to be developed to handle the many implications that the Internet of Things may bring to education.

And then, stepping away from the implications of the Internet of Things on business and education, I found myself contemplating a new world in which we’d be sharing, or as some predict, forgoing our roads to driverless cars.

About a year ago, Google released a first prototype of a driverless car and as you can see in this video, was received with delighted acclamations from those given the opportunity to ‘have a go’ being passengers in them.

Nearly a year after Google publicized its Self Driving Car Project, driverless cars are about to make their debut on the roads.  And with it, was a thought provoking article penned by Peter Martin: Reasons to be cheerful. What driverless cars will do for us in the Sydney Morning Herald (July 25th, 2015). With increased ‘freed-up’ time, our leisure time and productivity level will be increased dramatically.  Although many may be apprehensive about the demise of drivers – particularly for example “truckies” who, it is predicted, will no longer be needed five years from now to fulfill their present role of transporting goods in trucks around the country – there really is much to be excited about.  Have a read of Martin’s article and be inspired!

But ….. and there is always an ‘on the other hand’ kind of warning ….. smartcars are not immune from unforeseen dangers.  Have a look as WIRED senior writer, Andy Greenberg, takes his SUV for a drive on the highway while hackers attack it from miles away!

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“Education is far less about a set of facts than a way of thinking,” says the professor and theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss. “And therefore what I always think should be the basis of education is not answers but questions.”

Published on Jun 10, 2015

Krauss suggests that the task of educators is to teach kids to think and question.  In this short Big Think video he also argues that educators are the ones who should set standards, not school boards who are elected to run the schools.

Perhaps most controversially, he strongly suggests that standardized tests do not advance the education of kids one iota and that they have no place in our school programs.

Take a listen:

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